When it comes to choosing childcare in 2020, 'average' just doesn't cut it.
Parents are on the hunt for centres where their little people will thrive. From innovative menus that cater to specific food tastes and needs, to activity programs that, quite frankly, make most adults envious (think cooking classes and yoga sessions), there are some growing trends that are influencing how we choose childcare.
Arthur Charlaftis is the founder and CEO of Toddle, which is Australia's most comprehensive childcare search and comparison platform. Charlaftis, who is the former COO of RealEstate.com.au and has operated childcare centres himself, has a deep insight into what parents are really looking for when they choose a childcare centre.
We asked him what four of the biggest rising trends are, and here's what he told us.
1. Centre transparency and #alltheinfo.
There’s not much you can’t find online these days, so it makes sense that the first place most parents start the childcare search is on the internet. The problem is, a lot of centres don’t always have the information parents want or need to see.
"Parents expect to be able to get a feel for the centre by looking online, but a lot of centres don’t have information on their websites, such as what programs they offer, reviews, menus, their fees or even their availability," Charlaftis tells Mamamia.
Because of this, it can be very difficult for parents to get a proper 'feel' for the centre - and with COVID restricting in-person visits, parents face a conundrum.
Charlaftis and his team at Toddle saw this as an opportunity to create and showcase all the differences between centres in one place, to make the decision-making process easier for parents.
“Parents are a lot more informed today and want to know that they are making the right decision for their children when it comes to who looks after them," he tells us. "At Toddle, you can find everything you need in one place."
This includes photos, maps, menus, programs, extracurricular activities, immersive centre videos, and, often most importantly, parent testimonials and reviews. This provides an impartial and comprehensive online experience to help parents make a more informed decision on which childcare centre is right for them.